Re: [rumori] curve of sound innovation

From: Steev Hise (
Date: Wed Mar 14 2001 - 12:45:20 PST

Wed, 14 Mar 2001 found matt davignon writing:

>>From: Don Joyce <>
>>I can't prove a negative. Simply give me a "brand new" sonic element in
>>music, or a procedure to make it, and I will tell you where and when it has
>>occured in music BEFORE now as a precedent in the history of music.
>I'll bite:

Matt all your examples (and Taylor's earlier, about black
holes and whales and whatnot) are differences in degree but
not kind. I'm with Don, I think. All the basic "categories"
are covered. mentioning all these variations is like
listing the various colors that Fender Stratocasters come

but as Don keeps saying, this doesnt mean there's no new
music possible. Just that the basic building blocks are all
discovered. it's like saying we've sailed around the globe,
but every inch of it has yet to be visited.


>By "sonic element" are you referring to sound generation? Or compositional
>Daxophone - a specifically shaped piece of wood played off the edge of a
>table with a bow. It sounds remarkably like altered vocal samples. It's one
>of Hans Reichel's main instruments.
>Circuit-bent instruments
>Thai Elephant Orchestra
>Personal home computer recording & CD production - I believe this really has
>an effect on how music is made today. For example, the visual interface, and
>the ability to click and drag sounds into a linear pattern that can be
>played. Sure, there was already tape splicing and digital samplers, but the
>popularity of programs like ACID are changing the way people think about
>music production.
>The digital effects that have appeared recently (within the last 10 years)
>within digital composition programs. Bit Decimation and Granular Synthesis,
>for example.
>I've heard lots of people say that "everything that can be done has been
>done," and I simply don't buy it. It's like saying, "Every scientific fact
>to be discovered about the Earth has already been discovered," when we're
>still in the midst of learning all sorts of new stuff!
>You can say that all frequencies of sound within the human range of hearing
>have been reached, and I'll believe you. You can even say that all musical
>combinations of notes in the harmonic series have been played before, and
>I'll buy that. There is so much more to music than raw notes though.
>Compositional technique (how we come to that pattern of notes),
>instrumentation/sound generation, technology (including sampling), intent,
>and dynamic range all play a large part in how we hear music, and I can't
>believe that all those avenues have been previously exploited.
>If they have, then we might as well all stop right now.
>I would argue that you, Don Joyce, have added a new element to the world of
>music with both Over the Edge and Negativland, and that several people on
>this list who have been inspired by you have gone on to create their own
>unique forms in the world of sampled music.
>Matt Davignon
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Steev Hise, Head Chump
"Never confuse fun with success".
                -Don Joyce

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